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Dependent

God,

I am dependent.  Dependent on You, dependent on others, dependent on creation.

Even the IRS knows about “dependents.”  Those people who cannot or do not live on their own, those people who need help with a place to live, food to eat, provisions for life which they cannot secure for themselves.  There are many dependents, we are all dependents. I am a dependent.  I am dependent on You, O Lord.

I cannot live on my own. I cannot provide for all I need.  I cannot anticipate all that might come my way.

I cannot resist temptations. I cannot love as I ought. I cannot always behave rightly and not behave badly.

I cannot control everything.  I cannot control emotions. I cannot control myself.

I cannot save myself. I cannot change my ways alone. I cannot live like You.

In the midst of all “I cannot,” I am forced to recognize what has always been true of humanity since Adam and Eve, what we seem unable or unwilling to admit and embrace.

I am dependent O Lord!  I am dependent on You, dependent on others, and dependent on your graciousness in creation.

Lord Jesus, provide for all who are dependent on You. Amen.

 

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Posted by on March 29, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!

Lord God, I have read it and heard it so many times.  As a worship leader I have chosen Psalm 150 for a call to worship.  

   “Let everything,  everything that has breath”

Perhaps it is the “thing” that distracted me, thinking of only things like trees and stones, like lions and alligators, you know lord, “things.”  But here at this time and this place* I see that everything with breath, means all people, and people of all different nations, tribes, and groups; people of all different status, personality, and persuasion.  We are all called to praise the Lord.  We are all called to praise You!

Yet, as worship leaders, and as a worship leader at a Christian College, varied and diverse in many different ways, how can worship services become the service and the praise of all the people.   Must we worship in diversity in diverse times and place forever?   How can we who have breath, breathe in the Holy Spirit and give breath to our praise in ways that join our praise together.

Forgive me and forgive us for self-centered needs, ideas, and whims that divide our breath from you into seperate breaths. Grant that we might acknowledge that each and everyone of us live by only the breath you breathe into us, and that Your breath deep inside us seeks to breathe out your praise with every other person the breath that exclaims, “Praise the Lord.” Teach us your ways O Lord!  Amen.

*Prayer on my heart in response to our 1st session at the Calvin College worship symposium and NetVUE Conference in Grand Rapids, MI

 
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Posted by on January 28, 2016 in Scripture prayer

 

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Change my heart, O God

God of Grace and God of Greatness, You bless us this morning with Your presence.  We are humbled as we consider our place before You.  God of Love and God of Mercy, You bless us this morning with Your Presence.   We are thankful as we consider how You have lavished us with your everlasting love.  Thank You Father, Thank You Jesus, Thank You Holy Spirit.

Change.  Lord that is a word we do not like.  Change.  It brings out our deepest fears, plays on our insecurities, leaves us nothing to fall back on but You.  And perhaps that is why life never stays the same, that it is constantly changing; so that we might learn in simple faith to fall in your arms of love and power.

And so we pray this day O Lord, as your people.

Change us. Change our hearts.

            Change our fear into faith, our weakness into strength.

            Change our sinfulness to faithfulness, our despair into hope.

            Change our pride to humility, our loss to gain.

            Change our desires that we may desire only You.

            Change our minds where we have thought wrongly.

            Change our actions, where we have behaved wrongly toward You and toward others.

            Change our hearts, where we have labored to hold on to grudges, bitterness, and anger;

            Change our hearts to forgive as you have forgiven, to love as your have loved us.

            Change our cowardice to boldness in our witness to You.

            Change our priorities, to care about that which you care about: people, lives, love.

            Change our worship, that we may honor You more than pleasing ourselves.

Change us.  Yet not just us O Lord. Change our church, change Your church!  Change our nation, our leaders, those who influence our society. Change the world, bring peace where there is war; help where there are needy, good where there is evil, love where there is hate.

Change our hearts O God.  Through Jesus Christ our Lord we pray. Amen

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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A Prayer of the Gathered Congregation

All of creation wakes to meet you with praise, O God.

The rivers and waters, the trees of the fields, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea,

greet you with sounds and motions of joyful praise.

The sun gives witness to your light, the stars shine forth your glory, the universe declares your works.

 

We, your people, join our hearts, our minds, our hands and our voices, our whole beings with all of creation to worship and adore you, to thank you and praise you, O Christ, our creator, our Savior, and our God.

 

Let your glory, indeed, be over all the earth.

 

Today as we worship You, as we hear your voice and feel your presence, lift us from the pettiness of life that so often keeps our attention, our concern, and our hearts.  In all of life may we seek and find you, and be humble and thankful before you.  Lift our minds and our hearts to greater vision, greater purpose, greater life in you.  Transform us, change us, till we feel what you feel, see as you see, love what you love, will what you will, think and act more like you each day.

 

As a congregation of your people today, transform us.  May we be more passionate about what you are passionate about.  Deepen us in reflection on you, your Word, and your creation.  Deepen our prayer lives both as a congregation and as individuals of it.  Let us stand boldly with you and for you O Christ, let your church give witness to you always.

 

We pray for the nations of the world, for the leaders of the world.  We know Your will is peace, yet our world is so torn, so broken by greed, hate, and evil.  May your kingdom come, and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

 

We pray today for those who love you and serve you, may they grow in grace and experience the joy that comes from you alone.

We pray today for those who are seeking you, may they continue and may they find.

We pray today for those who are struggling, be near, O Christ.

We pray today for those who are far from you, those who resist you, those who oppose you, may your grace draw them to you forever.

We pray today for those who celebrate, for those who are mourning, for those who face illness, cancer, and diseases of all kinds.  We pray for those who are recovering, for those facing tests, for all those who like us are standing in the need of prayer.

 

We come to you today O Christ, because you alone are our Rock, our strength, our hope, our vision, our love.  And your love is touching us and healing us.  For this we lift up our voices to lift your name on high.  For this we praise you forever.  Amen.  Amen.

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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